We adore you O Christ, and we praise you,
because by your Holy Cross you have redeemed the world
A great number of the people followed him, and among them were women who were beating their breast and wailing for him. But Jesus turned to them and said,
“Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children….” (Lk 23:27-28)
In this passage, the women of Jerusalem show complete sincerity in their sorrow for Jesus. And despite his grave pain, Jesus tells them to redirect their compassion towards the rest of humanity. He calls them to seek justice in the world corrupted with sin, and to show love for others over one’s self. Nowadays, the local news is filled with so much death and violence that somehow, we are desensitized from feeling as much empathy for the victims and their families. Sometimes, we become selfish and prioritize ourselves over others when we are struggling, tired, or in pain. We tend to disregard the struggles of others, if their issues have little relevance to ourselves, while other times we refuse to sacrifice or suffer for their wellbeing.
In this passage, Jesus reminds us to overcome all these distractions and selfishness. He willingly suffered and gave up his life for humanity so that we may have hope of salvation. Jesus calls us to love one another like God has loved us. And with this unconditional love comes sacrifice and selflessness. As we go on with our lives each day, let us remember that we too must empathize like the pious women, and act out this compassion like Christ.